Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Title:       Duke of My Heart [Season for Scandal, book 01]
Author:   Kelly Bowen
Rating:   ★★★
Availability: Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo  |  iBooks  |  Google Play
*ARC received from publisher in exchange for an honest review

So far, Kelly Bowen hasn't let me down yet. I can usually rely on her to deliver a good story with a healthy dose of romance, and Duke of My Heart delivers that in spades.

And sorry for the comparison, but Ivory Moore was totally chanelling Olivia Pope, and I have no regrets because I love her attitude!

Scandal can be handled...

Captain Maximus Harcourt, the unconventional tenth Duke of Alderidge, can deal with tropical storms, raging seas, and the fiercest of pirates. But he's returned home from his latest voyage to find a naked earl—quite inconveniently deceased—tied to his missing sister's bed. And he has only one place to turn. Now he's at the mercy of the captivating Miss Ivory Moore of Chegarre & Associates, known throughout London for smoothing over the most dire of scandals.

Miss Moore treats the crisis as though it were no more serious than a cup of spilt tea on an expensive rug. As though this sort of thing happened on the job every day. Max has never in all his life met a woman with such nerve. Her dark eyes are too wide, her mouth is too full, her cheekbones too sharp. Yet together, she's somehow...flawless. It's just like his love for her, imperfect, unexpected—yet absolutely true.

One of the things I love in Duke of My Heart is that Ivory Moore was no simpering virginal miss. She was tough and no nonsense but also very sensual and passionate. She was a good regency version of Olivia Pope. Max Harcourt was just the man for her, although I couldn't quite figure out if he was more Fitz or Jake. I love that he was tough but also showed his vulnerable side. They were honest and clear about what they wanted, and that is something I hope to see more often in regency romance novels.

The Duke of My Heart was easy to read. It felt a little weirdy, and my eyes glazed over some descriptions, because I was just too curious what really happened to Max's sister (who is the reason why Ivory and Max met). Although romance was the focal theme of the novel, the mystery not-a-crime crime (because they weren't sure if it was a crime) proved to be as delicious as well, and its fruition was something I wanted almost as much as I wanted Ivory and Max to end up together.

I love that the romance and mystery element were developed with equal care. Too often, regency romance authors tend to build up the mystery, only to have it fall flat in the end, but that was not the case with the Duke of My Heart. Another series to look forward to!

There is also an intriguing character, named Alex, and for a moment I thought he would suit Ivory best, so I'm hoping he gets his own story too. :)

I'd recommend Duke of My Heart to those who love a good regency romance with a mystery, and of course, fans of Kelly Bowen.